Asclepias tuberosa ORANGE

Asclepias tuberosa
Asclepias tuberosa ORANGE
butterfly weed
SIZE/TYPE mid-sized perennial
USUAL HEIGHT 0.4-0.6m
USUAL WIDTH 0.3-0.4m
LEAVES deciduous broadleaf
COLOUR OF LEAVES green
FLOWERS showy
COLOUR OF FLOWERS orange
BLOOMING TIME June - September
LOCATION full sun
USDA zone (lowest) 4   (down to -34°C)
WINTER PROTECTION  
FOR ZONE 5+6 Code of winter protection zone 5+6
FOR ZONE 7 Code of winter protection zone 7
BELONGS TO CATEGORIES Perennials
Summer blooms
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Butterfly weed is a tuberous perennial from East USA and southern parts of Canada where it grows naturally in rocky slopes, sunny meadows, and exceptionally along stream banks but not in the boggy margins. It makes 40-70 cm tall, hairy stems with fresh green, narrowly lanceolate leaves which climb up the stems up to the inflorescence. Flowers are small, rich orange, composed in terminal, umbel-like cymes, and appear in profusion from late June until September. They produce nectar that many butterflies come to feast on – hence its name.

Butterfly weed is late to emerge in spring so don’t worry if you cannot see any sign of growth in late March or early April. When it does emerge it makes a lovely clump of healthy leaves which are as attractive as the flowers themselves. This plant is typical for cottage gardens, but also finds its place in modern, stylish arrangements where slim leaves and interesting inflorescence bring an extra feature that contrasts well with contemporary materials.

Butterfly weed needs a sunny location with free-draining soil of any pH. Wet and boggy sites, especially in winter, may cause root rot and will lead to diseases and eventually death of the plant. Fertilizing is not necessary but a well-balanced solution will help young plants become bushier and stronger sooner. Hardy to about -34°C (USDA zone 4).

Last update 21-01-2013
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GLOSSARY
  • STANDARD QUALITY - Plants of this group are 1st class quality with number of branches and overall density adequate to their size and age, considering they were container grown.
  • DE LUXE QUALITY - This label guarantees a luxurious quality of manually selected plants that, compared to their height and age, are exceptionally dense and beautiful.
  • EXTRA - These plants are usually mature and bigger specimens with exceptional overall appearance.
  • STANDARD (as described in the plant form) means a tree with a trunk of 190-210 cm and a crown at the top, unless specified differently. The commercial size for trees is their girth measured in the height of 1m from ground.
  • HOBBY - These plants are of the same quality as our standard-quality plants but younger and therefore cheaper.
  • SHRUB - a woody plant with branches growing bushy from the ground level.
  • HALF-STANDARD or MINI-STANDARD - a small tree with shorter trunk, its size is usually specified.
  • FEATHERED - These are trees with branches growing already from the base of the trunk and up along the stem.
  • GRASSES and PERENNIALS - Sizes given usually read the diameter of the pot or the clump, as specified.
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